From sunscreens that deposit an unwanted white cast to serums and creams that unintentionally lighten the skin, the beauty industry has historically fallen short on providing melanin-friendly skincare products. But the truth is, Black women make up a large percent of the beauty-consuming market, and it's time their needs are met. That's why we're excited to celebrate, support, and amplify these Black-owned businesses and the founders who produce products that cater to those of all skin tones. Here are the 20 best black-owned skincare brands to shop.
Shop the Best Black-Owned Skincare Brands
Vitamin C serums are some of the hardest products to get right, but industry vet Ron Robinson has done it. After working at brands such as Estée Lauder and Revlon, Robinson launched the blog BeautyStat, which focused on product reviews and trend forecasting from the POV of his role as a cosmetic chemist. This alternative perspective garnered a dedicated following, and after completing thousands of reviews, Ron created his line—starting with a stable vitamin C serum. The brand’s vitamin C serum deserves a standing ovation, as does its brightening vitamin C-based eye cream and barrier-boosting moisturizer.
What started as a passion project for co-founders She'Neil Spence and Nicolette Graves in 2015 turned into a full-fledged skincare brand. As women who had both oily and acne-prone skin, Spence and Graves dreamed of creating a product that would hydrate their complexions without causing blemishes and breakouts. That’s how the brand's top-rated Radiate Face Jelly: Balancing Daily Gel Moisturizer was born. This aloe-vera-based product is pumped with ingredients like beta-carotene and vitamins C and E to hydrate and balance skin without clogging pores.
At eight years old, Nyakio Grecio was taught how to create power-packed skincare made from pulverized coffee beans and other natural superfoods from her family farm in Kenya. With her grandmother’s teachings, her native land, and her travels in mind, Nyakio went on to create her namesake brand in 2002; it's centered around sustainable skin and body care. Everything in the line is ethically handmade in small batches using ingredients from around the world. Our favorites include the makeup-melting Sweet Almond Cleansing Oil Balm that never strips our skin and the brightening marula and neroli-based oil that cocoons skin for a moisturized complexion.
Oui The People
If you’re into shaving, we suggest you head over to OUI The People’s website to buy the chicest razors of all time. The brand launched in 2015 with founder Karen Young’s goal to fill a void in the direct-to-consumer shaving space. Like competitor brands Flamingo and Billie, OUI The People offers sensitive-skin-friendly tools including razors, sheet masks, bath products, and an exfoliating body serum. Not only do we adore the aesthetic of the brand’s rose gold razors, but its gel is ideal for getting a close, nick-free shave. And if you consistently suffer from ingrown hairs, fear not. The brand's glycolic and lactic-based body serum will have your back with its pore-unclogging abilities.
What do you get when you create science-backed formulations with sensitive skin and melanin-rich skin in mind? Dr. Anne Beal’s inclusive skincare brand that’s both effective and free of harsh ingredients like fillers, fragrances, and other common irritants. As a medical researcher and physician, Dr. Beal noticed a need in the skincare market for products that work for Black and Brown skin tones and were also sensitive skin-friendly. All of the products from her lineup are filled with soothing and nourishing ingredients that help eliminate inflammation—especially the kind that leads to hyperpigmentation.
Among the top-selling SKUs is her mineral sunscreen that’s white-cast free and her retinol-infused night oil made with a cocktail of good-for-skin oils including jojoba, moringa, rosehip, argan, evening primrose, and sunflower seed.
You’ve likely seen model-turned-entrepreneur Kristen Noel Crawley’s kiss-shaped lip masks plastered all over your Instagram the last few years. After a trip to Don Quijote (a Japanese-based chain store) in Tokyo, Kristen came across a wall of lip masks and instantly decided to create her collagen-infused version. More than five years later, the brand has expanded its offerings to include a variety of skincare must-haves, including soothing star-shaped eye masks soaked in retinol and lip balms drenched in moisturizing kokum and shea butters.
Rosen Skincare founder Jamika Martin knows the struggle of having lifelong acne-prone skin. After years of slathering her complexion with chemical-packed products and taking dermatologist-prescribed meds, Martin had enough. She decided to create an acne-friendly line that not only efficiently treated acne but also removed the shame surrounding it. In June 2017, Rosen Skincare was born, starring a natural, clean ingredient list consisting of radish root, pineapple enzymes, and strawberry root powder—just to name a few. The Super Smoothie Cleanser instantly exfoliates without disrupting any active pimples. And if you love a good mud mask moment, Rosen's boasts a blend of bentonite clay, zinc oxide, and tea tree oil to unclog pores and banish breakouts from irritating your skin.
Rose Ingleton MD Skincare
Dr. Rose Ingleton’s skincare brand effortlessly blends her expertise as a dermatologist with beautiful ingredients from her homeland of Jamaica. The products feature many mainstays of her youth, like sugarcane, lemon, and bilberry combined with skin-strengthening essentials like peptides, hyaluronic acid, and antioxidants. The Retexturizing Retinol Booster Serum is a must-have for its smoothing and plumping effects. We like to top it off with her Signature Moisturizer, which is made from her Jamaican SuperFruit Blend plus niacinamide and ceramides to soften and fortify.
Hormonal acne and hyperpigmentation have been on the skin concern list of Hyper Skin founder Desiree Verdejo since her teen years. Inspired to find a solution to eradicate these issues after a pregnancy flare-up, she created a sensational serum that’s become an overnight bestseller. What makes the serum unique is its inclusive formula that works for a variety of skin tones. This formula uses 15 percent vitamin C, along with a blend of bearberry, licorice, and salicylic acid to minimize dark spots while preventing future breakouts.
In a digital world filled with flawless filters and FaceTune, it can be hard to feel good in your skin—especially if it’s acne-prone. To create an acne-positive conversation, Olamide Olowe and her co-founder Claudia Teng created the bright, gen Z-friendly brand My Topicals. After struggling with chronic skin conditions, the two formulated wallet-friendly blends that felt fresh and fun but were also as effective as derm-prescribed topical treatments at clearing acne and brightening dark spots. Give the Faded Serum a try if you want to target discoloration. In need of a nourishing boost? Pop on the Like Butter Mask that is oh-so-soothing for those with sensitive and eczema-prone skin.
Black Girl Sunscreen
One of the most frustrating skincare-related problems Black and Brown people face is finding SPF that doesn’t leave a white, grayish cast on the skin. Thankfully, Shontay Lundy stepped in to save the day with her top-selling, cult-loved Black Girl Sunscreen. The transparent formula blends into the skin sans any ashy or white veil. In addition to nailing a sunscreen specifically for melanated complexions, Lundy also inspires and educates those in the Black community to wear sunscreen, as she believes there is a lot of misinformation surrounding SPF. Lundy’s tiny but mighty lineup also stars a matte version that’s made for combination and oily skin types.
Powered by roots, herbs, butters, and oils, founder Christina Tegbe uses her brand to celebrate Nigerian culture and the beauty rituals of all 54 African countries. The luxurious, sustainable products are nothing short of dreamy—not only in the way they feel on the skin but also in how they are ethically sourced from Africa. The African Beauty Butter is an absolute essential for frigid winters with its trifecta of shea butter, baobab oil, and jojoba oil. 54 Thrones offers a variety of scent combinations too, like Egyptian lavender and Moroccan mint, Ugandan vanilla, and Ethiopian Honey.
You may know Pharrell Williams for his hit music, but his new skincare brand also deserves major hype. As a welcomed addition to his apparel line, Humanrace, this eco-friendly and non-binary skincare brand is truly made for all. From the eye-catching green packaging to the pared-down product lineup of a cleanser, exfoliator, and moisturizer, Humanrace's mission is to spotlight self-care while simplifying your skincare regimen. The brand even offers a refill system to emphasize sustainability and eliminate excess waste.
This Beyoncé-approved skincare line deserves prime real estate in your medicine cabinet. Founded in 2018 by actor and model Dorion Renaud, the brand was designed to help Black and Brown people feel more confident in their skin. With a heavy focus on treating discoloration, dehydration, and blemishes, the brand’s products are infused with African shea butter for deep moisturization and lasting luminosity. If you’re not sure where to start, we suggest giving the three-step skincare system a go.
Consider Unsun the ultimate poolside companion. Founded by Katonya Breaux, who is singer Frank Ocean’s mother, this skincare brand’s products are specifically made for deeper complexions. The mineral-based tinted sunscreen boasts sun-shielding, anti-aging, and water-resistant benefits, all while imparting a soft luminous glow minus any white residue. The brand also offers a stunning, radiance-depositing liquid highlighter and deliciously soft body butter.
Shani Darden Skin Care
With her A-list client roster and ultra-famous products, it’s no surprise that Shani Darden is beloved by celebrities and beauty lovers alike. After training as an esthetician under one of Hollywood’s top derms, Darden decided to go off on her own and formulate her now best-selling Retinol Reform serum. With immediate success among her clientele, beauty editors, and enthusiasts, she’s expanded her product offerings to include high-performance cleansers, toners, moisturizers, and tools. While the retinol serum is one of our must-haves for its gentle yet effective formula, we also love the instant smoothing effects of her peptide-based eye cream.
Alicia’s Keys’ new skincare range is based on self-love and positivity. After years of going bare-faced, she launched her line Keys Soulcare, a skincare and wellness brand that offers products that not only nourish your skin but also your soul. With dermatologist-backed formulations and clean ingredients, the lineup’s products also include affirmations for a fully relaxing, restorative experience. Some notable products are the manuka-honey cleanser that washes away the day without stripping the skin’s natural oils. The Promise Serum with niacinamide is another standout.
Longtime makeup artist and esthetician Lesley Thornton founded Klur after realizing how many of her clients didn’t know how to properly care for their complexions. She began formulating products for her more than 2,500 clients to use in the comfort of their own homes between appointments; soon after, Klur was born. The inclusive and sustainable lineup stars serums, oils, cleansers, exfoliators, and targeted treatments that are both aesthetically pleasing and efficacious. The Lipid Replenishment Oil works wonders for replenishing a depleted skin barrier with its blend of antioxidants like squalene, Coq10, and vitamins C and E.
Brooklyn-based Dr. Chaneve Jeanniton created Epi.logic skincare after being inspired by her work as a board-certified oculofacial plastic surgeon. Her fastidiously curated product range is a result of her diverse patient pool—and their unique needs and goals. She designed a science-backed skincare line that’s simplified in its approach and number of products. Everything within the assortment is a multitasker, filled with a thoughtful combo of actives, such as retinol, peptides, and growth factors for fast-acting, complexion-boosting results. The product lineup is effective and easy to navigate; our go-to is the Eye Contact 360 Night Repair Cream, which tackles elasticity, texture, and pigment concerns.
After feeling disappointed in the lack of luxury skincare designed to target common skin concerns of melanated complexions, Nigerian-born entrepreneur Ozohu Adoh launched Epara. The name, which means to cocoon oneself in the Nigerian dialect of Ebira, says it all. Featuring products that confront hydration and hyperpigmentation, the chicly-packaged offerings include masks, moisturizers, serums, cleansers, and more—all spiked with African botanicals, antioxidants, and other nourishing ingredients. While every product is a total treat for your skin, the Balancing Face Oil is our favorite. It illuminates the skin while addressing discoloration and evening the skin tone.